Reeling Penguins Welcome Rangers on National TV
The Pittsburgh Penguins meet the New York Rangers for the first time in what should be a crucial tilt between teams that could meet in the playoffs. Pittsburgh is the favorite as the hosts on the NHL odds but the Rangers have won five of their last six and have the momentum.
New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins Game Information
- Game: New York Rangers (33-13-5) at Pittsburgh Penguins (31-14-8)
- Location: PPG Paints Arena
- Day/Time: Saturday, 3:05 p.m. ET
- Television: ABC
Shesterkin Carrying Rangers
The New York Rangers are not only challenging for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division but have the easiest schedule left. New York has ridden a potent power play (PP) that is firing at 26.2%, the fourth-best rate in the NHL, and the best netminding.
Igor Shesterkin should win the Vezina Trophy and in what has been a stacked year for goalies, Shesterkin has all but pulled away. He leads the NHL in save percent (SV%), goals saved above expectations, and adjusted goals-against average. These are Dominik Hasek numbers. Crazy!
Lastly, your leaders in Goals Saved Above Expected, courtesy of @EvolvingHockey.
Vezina favorite and Hart contender Igor Shesterkin leads the way. Matt Murray’s comeback lands him in the top-20. pic.twitter.com/EfadzcuxAO
— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) February 25, 2022
What’s most impressive is how he’s performed against the best teams. He is 6-2-0 with a 93.7 SV% against the three best teams in the East: Carolina, Tampa Bay, and Toronto. Does the question become if he can keep it up? Because the Rangers will barely be an average team if he falters.
Penguins Must Stay Strong
On the other end are the Pittsburgh Penguins, who are starting to struggle after a torrid stretch from mid-November to the end of January. Tristan Jarry was right beside Shesterkin in the Vezina conversation but has started to crack. He is 2-4-1 in his last seven starts with an.888 SV%. He’s given up four or more goals in the Penguins’ last five losses.
Jarry’s struggles are tied to the Penguins’ suddenly vulnerable penalty kill. The Pens used to lead the NHL in this department, but this has dropped to 23rd with a 75 percent success rate in their last 11 games. In their last three games, Pittsburgh gave up four PP goals in just nine attempts.
Pittsburgh is still playing some of the best 5v5 hockey but Jarry’s declining play is tough to overcome, especially against the top offenses like Toronto. As such, Pittsburgh would be tough to bet online as a favorite. Also, you can find NHL odds and lines for a game between the Detroit Red Wings and the Ottawa Senators.
Rangers vs Penguins Head-to-Head
Games between the New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins have leaned toward Pittsburgh. The Penguins have won six of their last 10 meetings, with four of those in regulation. Pittsburgh has won six of their last seven home games against the Rangers. NHL game between the Florida Panthers and the Boston Bruins.
New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins Prediction
Roll with the New York Rangers here. They have had trouble beating the Pittsburgh Penguins at the PPG Paints Arena, but they have a good shot to snap that streak with Tristan Jarry and Pittsburgh struggling.
Igor Shesterkin only has a career .899 SV% against the Penguins but even if he struggles, the Rangers are much more potent offensively. New York has a higher shooting percentage on 5v5 and has the top-ranked PP this month. Book the Rangers to beat the Penguins on the online sportsbook.